RECAP / PHOTOS: Mayer Hawthorne @ The Hollywood Palladium 1/31/14

As Mayer Hawthorne settles into the sound of his third album, Where Does This Door Go, he has made a departure from the bitter-yet-comical breakup tone of yesteryears and turned instead towards coming-of-age storytelling that sacrifices none of his signature style. Equal parts nerdy and suave, this Ann Arbor-native has been charming us with his witty brand of soulful funk since 2008.

In May of 2013, his single “Her Favorite Song” boogied its way into our hearts and has been stuck in our head ever since. It’s hard to believe that the persona of Mayer Hawthorne actually started, as somewhat of a joke —- Cohen never anticipated it to go beyond his family and friends.

I’ve been waiting for this show for a few months now, so when 5:00pm on Friday, January 31st rolled around, I had my Hennessey and ginger ale primed and ready to go. The Palladium was packed full of like-minded individuals ready to groove the stress of the work-week away. There were couples canoodling; there were groups of open-minded artistic bros shaking their bro-booties; there were vodka-drunk girls/gays taking off their shoes and saying “f*ck guys tonight, let’s just dance!” The Bottom Line: everybody there was to have some good ol’ fashioned fun.

As he took the stage through neon heart-shaped doors, the crowd went wild. The ever-stylish Cohen and his talented four-piece band looked dapper as ever—“hipster-funky-sexy-chic”, I overheard one person call it. From the second he walked out, he had the crowd in the palm of his hand. His set was dynamic and alive, bringing the crowd up with the borderline-dubby “Allie Jones” and crowd favorite “The Walk” and cooling everybody down with the sexy groove of “Just Ain’t Gonna Work Out” and “Back Seat Lover”.

There are only 11 more stops on his “Where Does This Go” tour and if Los Angeles was any indicator, tickets will go very quickly. As he gains momentum with every stop, the charismatic Mayer Hawthorne is poised to be breaking on to the main stage in 2014. (The ladies are going to just love him.)

Mayer Hawthorne w/ Quadron Tour Dates

Feb 18 – Lawrence, KS @ Granada Theatre
Feb 20 – St Louis, MO @ The Pageant
Feb 21 – Nashville, TN @ Cannery Ballroom
Feb 22 – Atlanta, GA @ CenterStage
Feb 23 – Charlotte, NC @ Amos Southend
Feb 24 – Cahrleston, SC @ Music Farm
Feb 27 – New York, NY @ Webster Hall
Feb 28 – Brooklyn, NY @ Warsaw
Mar 1 – Boston, MA @ House of Blues
Mar 3 – Washington, DC @ 9:30 Club
Mar 6 – Detroit, MI @ The Garden Theater